My husband an I stayed at the Carambola for 10 days 3 years ago. We absolutely loved it. At the time, they had just switched to Renaissance and were undergoing a major renovation. But we got a renovated room at it was lovely.
You must realize that the area the resort is in is remote. It is the only resort on that part of the island. You cannot walk to anywhere outside of the resort and there is no public transportation. That is one of the things we loved about the place. It is a beautiful setting. We loved relaxing on the screened porch that comes with every room and listening to the waves.
Do rent a car if you will be there for more than a couple of days. There are some good restaurants not far from the resort and even though you drive on the left side of the road, there is little traffic and the driving is easy. Try Eat at Cane Bay. It had great fish tacos and Cruzan Rum Cake. And Above the Cliff had good pit barbeque.
I would skip hiking to the tidal pools if you aren't strong hikers. It's not well marked. We got lost the first day and hiked around for hours. It was an interesting trip through the rain forest though. Saw lots of HUGE hermit crabs. The second attempt, we found the pools after a semi-strenuous hike. But it was too precarious to get into the pools. If you are young, fearless, and nimble, you would probably enjoy it though.
We loved the snorkel trip to Buck Island. It's a great day trip.
THere's a great native dance show at the hotel on Fridays. Lots of locals come for the DJ dancing afterwards. They were very friendly. THey pulled my husband and I onto the dance floor with them.
All in all, a lovely stay if you like quiet, outdoor activities, and natural entertainment.
Sounds like a wonderful spot, we have been looking for another Caribbean Island to visit that has a Marriott property so this is worth a good look. Having fun with the island locals always tops the charts for good times, other than the beautiful water.
Thanks for the information nancynick, hope it helps Debbie as well.
I stayed at the Frenchman's Reef and Ritz-Carlton for a wedding a few years ago. For those who like to shop, they had the best prices on luxury goods that I have ever seen. I only have a few designer watches, but my friends fly back to buy a new one on the island every year the prices are so good. I wasn't too excited about the food, but we went to more local grills while we were there.
You must take a trip to St. John's. To me, it was the highlight of my trip (besides 40% off a Breitling). The island is beautiful, with some of the best snorkling areas I personally have ever seen. You can take a tour for the day and see the entire island. A quick ferry ride goes back and forth between the two islands a few times a day.